F70PE Pensions

Andrea Sneddon

Course co-ordinator(s): Andrea Sneddon (Edinburgh).


To introduce fundamental practical and technical issues in the actuarial management of UK defined benefit occupational pension schemes.

Detailed Information

Course Description: Link to Official Course Descriptor.

Pre-requisite course(s): F70LA Life Insurance Mathematics A & F70LB Life Insurance Mathematics B .

Location: Edinburgh.

Semester: 1.

Learning Outcomes: Subject Mastery

At the end of studying this course, students should be able to:

  • describe the calculation of benefits under the following pension schemes: UK state pensions, personal pensions and occupational pension schemes (both defined benefit and defined contribution)
  • discuss the advantages and disadvantages of the following features of pension schemes : funding, pay-as-you-go, taxation, accounting requirements, trustees, integration with basic state pension, actuarial reduction and enhancement to pensions
  • derive commutation functions appropriate to the scheme design
  • show how to value a pension scheme using emerging cost techniques and discuss the relative merits of commutation functions and emerging costs
  • calculate the standard fund and standard contribution for the most common funding methods
  • describe how to deal with deficits and surpluses
  • discuss how the recommended contribution rate and solvency level change for each funding method under differing methods
  • describe the features of the asset classes that pension schemes invest
  • describe the different purposes of an actuarial investigation
  • describe how to determine a valuation basis for economic and demographic assumptions
  • perform an analysis of surplus

Assessment Methods:

This course and Life Office Practice will be examined together in a 3-hour exam (80%) at the end of the 2nd semester. Both courses will have an assessed project (10% each).

SCQF Level: 10.

Other Information

Help: If you have any problems or questions regarding the course, you are encouraged to contact the lecturer

VISION: further information and course materials are available on VISION